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Jul 9, 2012 10:36 AM CST
|I want to address someting and I really need the opinion of all those on here that do sell seeds. I have had 2 customers complain because their seeds they got from me didn't germinate. How do all of you seed sellers handle complaints like this. The way I feel is that there is really no guarantee that they will. Seeds can look super good and still not germinate. I have had 3 pots of daylily seeds myself not germinate this summer. I also bought some Swiss Chard seeds from Lowes this spring and planted them twice and neither time did they germinate. I did not go back to Lowes and complain. They were Burpee seeds too and I usually don't have problems with them. Any opinions will be much appreciated.|
Jul 9, 2012 11:06 AM CST
|Cindy - The one time I did have someone complain I offered the buyer his money back, or some other seeds since I was out of the ones he bought. The buyer didn't take me up on either. He said he just wanted me to know what happened. I always worried about the listings that went for higher prices. When someone pays a lot for seeds and they don't germinate, I think they get pretty upset. I would offer the complainers some replacement seeds. I know I have more seeds than I could ever plant or sell. It's a small gesture that could make someone a loyal buyer for life. |
Jul 9, 2012 11:11 AM CST
|Thanks Debra, I am going to do that. I don't have any of one cross that this customer wants. Do you ever put a disclaimer in your listings that states that there is no guarantee of germination???|
Jul 9, 2012 11:21 AM CST
|This will be my second year selling seeds so I don't have much experience with this issue. I personally wouldn't ask for refund/replacement unless the seeds arrived mushy or what have you. There are way too many ways that people germinate seeds and too many variables to what may go wrong; you never know what they may have done to the seeds.|
Example: I can't remember if it was on the Robin or one of the message boards but someone was told by another person to microwave the seeds to get them to germinate faster. I would have to say. IMHO, that microwaving would be the death of a seed.
I did have one person last year tell me that not one of the 70 seeds they got from me germinated. There were 4 different crosses and honestly I can't believe that not a single one germinated. This is a person that should know how to do seeds, but you never know. Everyone else had good germination rates from the seeds.
What I did was offer to replace them this fall after I remade the cross this season and they were fine with it.
My personal opinion is replace the seeds if you can, if you don't have more of that cross offer them something similar. If they want the exact cross offer to replace them when you make the cross again. I would also ask them how long they had been planted (since some seeds can take quite awhile to germinate) and how they germinated/planted them and such to see what may have gone wrong. Maybe they are new (maybe not) and had no clue as to what they were doing or haven't waited long enough.
Jul 9, 2012 12:13 PM CST
|Yes Michele, I can totally see your point. It would be hard to believe in your case that not one of 70 seeds germinated. And, you don't know how the customers is going about germinating the seeds too, just like you mentioned. Thanks for your suggestions.|
Jul 9, 2012 7:22 PM CST
|Last year I had really good germination rates with my seeds, and ended up planting 45 seedlings - all of which are still alive. (some barely because of the drought)|
This year I started about the same number, and have a whopping 20 seedlings which just went into the garden.
Some were purchased seeds, some were collected.
Have no clue why the difference.
And no, I did not complain to the sellers of my purchased seeds. On the other hand, I refuse to pay more than $1 a seed. So I am not talking big bucks. So survive, some don't.
I do like Michelle's suggestion about offering to replace them if possible. But personally, I wouldn't complain, especially if they looked "good" upon receipt ~Jan
Jul 9, 2012 8:08 PM CST
|I'm just curious. Are the seeds sold the year after harvesting or are they sold right after harvest and the buyer has to store them until spring? I've never bought daylily seeds, but I have grown hundreds of daylilies from seed.|
Jul 9, 2012 8:15 PM CST
|I bought 25 seeds from a well named dealer on the Lily Auction several years back. They gave me 15 extra as a bonus. When they arrived none of 40 germinated. I got an order in the next week from the same person, all of them germainated, don't rememger what or how many on this one since I had no problems. I waited over a month and emailed the dealer and he sent me another 25, my orginal purchase. Everyone of these germinated. I have no idea what happened to those original 40, same cross, same soil, same everything. I felt so bad about complaining and still do. They sold 1000's of seeds every year and swore no one else ever had a problem. I bought seeds from them many more times and never had another problem. |
I've always wondered if something happened in shipping. This is a big fear of mine since I'm about to start selling seeds, too. I'm new at selling, I will make mistakes. That's just me, I always do. I want everyone to be happy, as I'm sure you do too. The big thing is, where do you draw the line. We have no way of knowing if it's true or not. If the person is just regretting having paid a huge price for the seeds? Were the seeds really bad? Did they leave them in a plastic bag in the sun? So many things could have happened to cause the seeds to be bad or they might be fine.
I think I would use the tree mail option and ask some of the our sellers if they have had a problem with this person. I'd be very discreet, very very discreet. I'd never accuse in public, that can be a bad thing. If you don't find any problems elsewhere, then you must follow your "gutt" as Gibbs would say. I, too, would offer a refund or replacement.
Jul 9, 2012 9:11 PM CST
|I don't charge a lot for my seeds. I have a l.99 starting bid and that is usually for l0 dip seeds or 5-8 tet seeds. As a seller, I have no way of knowing how the customer is trying to germinate the seed, like Michele mentioned. I thought last year was a pretty good summer and seeds looked good but I guess one has no way of telling. The customer has agreed to take some other seeds from me.|
Jul 10, 2012 1:01 AM CST
|Tabby, some seeds are sold right after harvest after being refrigerated 2-3 weeks and others sell the previous years crop that they didn't get planted. We have no way of knowing when they are going to plant them so they may have to store them. Most people buying them now are going to plant them now. But if they buy in the fall they may store them until spring or they may be starting them indoors. I have bought in the fall/winter and stored them until the following Aug when I planted my newly harvested seeds. I don't know why I didn't plant them earlier (brain fart) but I was thinking I wanted them all planted at the same time for some reason |
I have bought seeds from a well known seller in fall 2010, lots and lots of different crosses. As with Mona, these came with 25 seeds (some 20) with 10 or more extra seeds of same. I even had one cross that I bought twice, 25 on one and 20 on the other plus the bonus seeds. I planted them and I had whole crosses of 35 seeds not germinate. The one I had double of we're not planted together, there were several other crosses in between. One of the crosses had no germination at all and the other did great; don't know what the problem was. Whole crosses of 25-30 seeds rotted where others around them didn't. I have no clue as to why.
The buyer of mine that didn't germinate had 4 different crosses and one cross was actually an unknown with a known so it was 2-3 crosses of unknowns mixed together plus the other 3 crosses. This is why I have doubts about it. If one whole cross didn't germinate I could understand, but not 5-6 different crosses. They more than likely did something wrong.
Jul 10, 2012 3:30 AM CST
|I have sold lots of seed in the pass and have had some of the same complaints. We tried to make every buyer happy just like you guys even tho there is no guarantee a seed will germinate. We who plant lots of seed every year know that seeds are always a gamble and would never complain to a seller that his seed did not come up, he or she has no control over mother nature. Most of the complaints will be from buyers who have very little experience with seed and are expecting a Stout Medal winner from the $10 they spent. One thing I would never do is tell someone I would make the same cross next year and send them some more seed, thats just way beyond the call of duty, but thats just me. Knowing me I want even have those same two daylilies a year from now and at this time in my life I can't remember what I did yesterday.|
Sell those seed, you can't make every happy.
Jul 10, 2012 4:44 AM CST
|I agree with Fred and the only reason I even said I would redo the cross is because I knew the daylilies would actually be available to use because I believe it was in April that they informed me of the problem. I'm not making the crosses for all of them because two of the crosses were bonuses and they will get whatever I have for those. But the other 2 I figured I would try and do because they did spend $100 on the seeds. The cross will probably not be the same because it was unknown pod x known pollen so I really have no way of knowing for sure the pod parent. Somehow the tag or clip didn't get put with the pods. But what they were really buying was the pollen parent anyway because it was a newer daylily. |
I won't do it again because it is a hassle trying to make sure the cross gets done or it actually takes unless it's something that's going to be crossed again anyway (which usually isn't the case).
Jul 10, 2012 5:19 AM CST
|I agree with both Fred and Michelle also. Like Fred said it is probably very inexperienced daylily growers or newbies as we sometimes call them that would complain over a few dollars. I would never complain myself. I don't even complain when a new daylily dies from crown rot. That is a condition that the seller of the plant has no control over. Sometimes the stress in shipping and then all this hot weather we have had is just too much for the plant. I have lost 3 new plants this summer due to crown rot and I know our weather has had a lot to do with it. That is very unusual in our climate for that to happen in one summer.|
Jul 10, 2012 5:51 AM CST
|Cindy, I too have had problems with crown rot this crazy hot & dry summer. I have saved one, lost a couple and a few others are not sure if they want to live or die.|
Sorry for the hijack
Jul 10, 2012 5:58 AM CST
|The ones I have lost came from the south and the three that seem to be doing ok are from Wisconsin and Minnesota. Maybe with all the heat down south it was just too hard for the plant to accilimate again.|
Jul 10, 2012 6:29 AM CST
|I sell seeds and gave 4 refunds from last years seeds. They were four different people. I'm thinking that the extreme heat we had last year damaged them, either in the mail or otherwise. But you never know, one person who wrote to me, I know they know how to grow them. I figure if a person is upset enough to write and tell me, I will refund their money. I want people to be happy with their seeds and buy more, thats just me. The seeds I sell are all the current years crop and have been chilled.|
Jul 10, 2012 2:06 PM CST
|I have a question about shipping seed. I'm putting my seeds into the small plastic bags. Then into the fridge for 2-3 weeks. It'll be sometime next week before I have any ready to sell. The first group of my seeds are the "ifies" so, I'm waiting on them to get their full cold in the fridge before listing. I want to know for sure they are good. |
Now, the question: Do you take your seeds out of the fridge for a day before shipping so the seeds can warm up before putting them into the shipping envelope? I think they will sweat if they go through a severe temp change and this could litterally cause them to cook in shipping with some of the hot weather we are having around the country. I want to give my seeds the best shot at surviving the shipping process.
All ideas will be greatly appreciated. Thanks and blessings, Mona
Jul 10, 2012 2:22 PM CST
I just take them out of the fridge the morning of shipping. They warm up fast. If I see any moisture in the bag. I'm now taking a little piece of paper towel and putting it into the little bag. There is nothing you can do about the heat and shipping. I try to wait until I see my mailman go down the other side of the street, then I take mine to the metal mailbox at my street. This way it isn't in the direct sunlight too long.
Yesterday I had several to ship and was going out to the store, so I dropped my seeds at a post and parcel store to mail them for me. I knew I wouldn't be home and didn't want to put them in the hot mailbox. If one or two is going out in the mail, I just put them in the mailbox, when I see him. Sitting at my computer I can see out front.
Jul 10, 2012 2:51 PM CST
I too take them out the morning of shipping and usually by the time I write the address on the envelopes they are warmed up. I take mine to the post office as I ship a lot international; I have the custom slips here so I go ahead and make them out to save time at the post office.
When I did use the plastic baggies I always put a piece of paper towel in with the seeds, I did this as I packed them up to go in the fridge. This helps control moisture in the baggies when in the fridge because I have heard a lot of people say they have gotten mold in the baggies because of moisture. And this would help with any moisture during shipping as well.
If you are worried about shipping in the heat you could say you will ship them in the fall once it cools down. There are sellers on the LA that won't ship in the winter either because they are afraid the seeds will freeze.
Jul 10, 2012 3:54 PM CST
|Thank you so much. I just wasn't sure about the time they need to get warmed up. That sounds good to me. I'll take mine to the post office to be mailed. We live in a really small town and our mail lady has a route that keeps her on the road from around 8am(we're one of her first deliveries) at our house until around 2pm, she's told us. So, her picking them up and spending the day in the back of her pickup wouldn't be a real good way to start their journey.|
It's so nice to have your knowledge available to all of us. Some people are not near as kind as ya'll are considering we are all trying to sale the same product, all very different, but still the same.
Thanks again and many blessings to all, Mona